We are excited to announce a partnership between Congregation Beth David and Milk & Honey Catering (M&H), led by Jonathan Mizrahi. While we are very pleased with the service that House of Bagels provided us for Kiddush lunches and dinners, this move allows us to have an in-house, full-time kosher caterer under Rabbi Ohriner’s kashrut (the laws of keeping kosher) supervision. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Jeff Leo of House of Bagels, as well as his staff for providing delicious food and excellent service at our Kiddush lunches and simchas (joyful occasions) over the past 17 months. For those who may not have had a chance to meet Jeff, know that he is a true mensch! We wish him and his business much success.
Beginning December 1, M&H will be our preferred in-house caterer. This means M&H will provide for our Kiddush fund sponsored lunches and CBD sponsored events. In addition, M&H will be providing kosher meals to places of business, simchas, and Jewish schools throughout Silicon Valley and beyond.
What are the implications of this partnership on our auxiliary groups and members?
Our contract with M&H ensures full access to the CBD kitchen for our members, auxiliary groups, and outside caterers if scheduled with our ritual director, Barbara Biran, at a minimum of three weeks in advance. In addition, it has always been our policy that anyone who uses the CBD kitchen must ensure its cleanliness after use. However, we would like to help our members, auxiliary groups, and outside caterers understand what this means. In consultation with M&H, we have created a “cleaning checklist”. In order to ensure mutual kavod (respect) and the cleanliness of our kitchen, we are asking anyone who uses the kitchen to utilize the “cleaning checklist”. In the unlikely event that this checklist is not fulfilled, the party using the kitchen will incur a $250 cleaning fee so that the kitchen will be clean for the next user.
In addition, the kitchen now contains some cabinets reserved for M&H. When using the kitchen, please only use the items reserved for CBD use. Again, in fulfilling the Jewish value of kavod (respect), we kindly ask all who use our kitchen to be respectful of M&H’s property.
Finally, with our new partnership with M&H, we have also updated our Kashrut Policy (link included below). The only significant changes are the exclusion of cheeses without certification and the exclusion of Tablet K certification from use in our kitchen. The exclusion of cheese without kosher certification is due to the vast amount of certified kosher cheese available both wholesale and retail. Of greater importance, is our desire to be an inclusive community in which all Conservative Jews will feel comfortable eating. On December 6th, Rabbi Ohriner will be teaching on these two topics during our Hot Topics in Halakhah series following Kiddush lunch (approximately 1:30pm). We invite you to join us if you are curious in learning more about these changes in our kashrut policy.
Our lay leadership and senior staff believe this new relationship will be of mutual benefit to both CBD and M&H. We welcome Jonathan and the Milk & Honey staff to Congregation Beth David and look forward enjoying their delicious, appealing, and thoughtfully prepared cuisine.
Rabbi Philip R. Ohriner Barbara Biran David Hoffman
Senior Rabbi Ritual Director President